You’ve likely heard about cloud-based dental practice management software, and its claim to eliminate the need for onsite servers and firewalls. The cloud allows for convenient access to shared data, so naturally, using a cloud-based practice management software seems convenient. However, there are a number of reasons why it may be better for your office to stick with a local practice management system; specifically, your practice’s connectivity, security, and costs.
Using a cloud-based practice management means you are no longer just relying on your local network and server. Instead, your internet connection has to be up, as well as the route to the practice management’s data center and the connection to the data center in order for your practice management to work.
Cloud-based practice management software is a much higher value target for bad actors. While a dental office with its practice management running on a local network may get a few attacks aimed at it, a cloud-based dental practice will have attacks aimed at it repeatedly.
If anyone within the practice reuses passwords across different logins, such as using the same password for a social media site and their practice management password, and the social media site’s password is stolen, there is the possibility of the stolen password getting decrypted, and your practice management getting accessed.
Cloud-based practice management doesn’t actually save you money as is claimed. You still need all of the same equipment as before, including your server and firewall.
Your practice’s onsite server acts as your domain controller. Images may need to be stored on your server rather than in the cloud (depending on your imaging software), and you need to have centralized authentication to your workstations. You also need to be able to control the settings on all of your workstations from one centralized location.
An enterprise-grade firewall, along with a reliable antivirus solution, plays a critical role in ensuring your network is protected.
When it comes to practice management, local practice management is a proven, reliable option. It is very secure, good for compliance, and similarly priced as cloud-based practice management. If you are a multi-site dental practice and don’t want physical servers in your practice at all, Digital Technology Partners can leverage Amazon Web Services to put your server in the cloud in such a way that it is still secure, and will reduce your attack surface. Questions about the different practice management options, and which would be best for your dental practice? Send us a message and we’ll be in touch!